"Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored." -Aldous Huxley

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wSaturday, October 29, 2005

BOO: I have a short item in the new Washington Post Book World, in the special Halloween shorts section. It's a brief review of a histroy of hell (scroll down to "Global Warming"). It begins like so:

In the 1980s, a graveyard in Stull, Kan., was overrun by visitors, drawn there by a rumor that Satan had impregnated a local woman in the previous century. The stillborn half-human, half-demon reportedly had been laid to rest there. In Go to Hell: A Heated History of the Underworld, Chuck Crisafulli and Kyra Thompson explain, "Halloweens began to bring crowds to the cemetery to wait for the devil's visitation" to pay his respects. Police had to give out tickets for trespassing.

Another book in the list looks like it'd be worth checking out: In the Company of Crows and Ravens, by John Marzluff and Tony Angell. Here's a bit of David Gessner's review:

From Poe to Van Gogh, the birds have inspired ominous art, but these days they are best at mirroring us. In fact, what's really spooky is how much like human beings they are. They dumpster-dive through our cities, knowing that a golden arch on a white bag means something tasty inside, and they thrive in our suburbs, where they use our well-groomed lawns as their private worm farms. Crows even understand our traffic laws: not flying off from roadkill but hopping to the other side of the yellow line when a car approaches.

posted by Jeremy at 11:37 AM